Friday, 24 October 2008

Iraq's oil reserves not for sell

A former Iraqi oil official and now an executive director of an energy studies center on Friday defended Iraq's first post-war oil bidding round as critics labeled it as selling of 40 percent of the country's 115-billion-barrel oil reserves to the international oil companies.

"Iraq has not put its oil reserves up for sale," Fadhil Chalabi, the executive director of the London-based Centre for Global Energy Studies and Iraq's former Oil Ministry's undersecretary, wrote in the UK's Guardian newspaper.

"Our contracts with oil companies will simply allow us to restore production levels," Chalabi added in response to a news report published by the daily on October 13 when Iraq kicked off his first oil bidding in London.

In his article, Chalabi made it clear that inernational oil companies will not have a share in Iraq's reserves under the proposed service contracts and what duties to be assigned to these oil companies in these contracts.

As I said in a previous post, critics have no right to attack the Oil Ministry step and that they have to fully understand these deals before making any statement.

I hope we will hear more voices from such famous experts from now on.

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